The BlackRose Manor

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Welcome to the blog. This will be a discussion area for the site, characters, ideas and suggestions. I hope each and everyone of you will follow this and give your input when you have any. I want to make this site user friendly and a place that you want to come to. My main goal here is the enjoyment and creativity of role play.

Raven BlackRose

 

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Cooperative Role Play

Posted on February 24, 2012 at 4:50 PM Comments comments (0)

This form of play can be defined as Roleplay in where all involved contribute to a story, where the wants, needs, and goals of each character are brought in to consideration. It is a collaborative effort where all players are co-authoring the overall tale being played out.

 

I touched base on this with The 3 C’s article and will expand on that subject a bit more.

 

In a Free-Form Role Playing Game (FFRPG) you are the author of your own story. You can make your character as powerful, beautiful, wise, or wicked as you want. However all of that means little if those you play with are not willing to play into your character’s illusion. This can be highly frustrating depending on the nature of one’s character. Hard to play an imposing villain when the other characters don’t feel they can be any sort of threat. Why play a seductress if others are somehow immune to the wiles, pheromones, and subtleties you painstakingly think of. These are the things I spoke off in making each other look good.

 

In play, some are noticing there is an odd nature to Cain’s scent. He has an incense about him from hours spent burning a special blend of Rhino Horn, Cocoa beans, dried Passion Fruit. Two of which have chemical triggers that release endorphins in the brain that aid blood flow. For humans it reacts as a strong aphrodisiac and to supernatural beings it holds similar effects. But that scent only holds sway for those players that want it to work on their characters. If a player chooses not to play into that part of the illusion around Cain, then I’m not going to force it. It is about working with each other to tell the story. While the incense has these alluring capabilities, he uses it as a defense against creatures with a heightened sense of smell, such as Lycans.

 

That is just one example of playing into each other’s illusion. No one can make, or do anything to your character without your permission. This isn’t true for all role-play sites. Each one has their own rules on how events are handled. From experience, most of AOL post-1995 is a No-Mun (Player) Consent field where if someone wants to harm your character, they’re going to do it and you either play things their way…or leave the room.

 

No Mun Consent, while not initially negative is expressly reflective on those who play into it. This form gave rise to god-modding, screen name deletion as a penalty to losing, guild wars, and chat battles where the minimum length was a 20 chat-box post detailing your moves. It wasn’t about skill, it was about who could type the fastest. That sort of play isn’t something I enjoy, and it isn’t conducive at all in promoting player cooperation. I have heard horror stories where disputes crossed into the realm of Out of Character (OOC). These incidents are nightmares not just for the players, but the administrators who have to work through how to handle the entire situation.

 

In Role Play we are all co-authors to one large story. Working together has the best odds at making it a great tale than any one person trying to control every aspect.

The 3 C's.

Posted on February 23, 2012 at 3:55 PM Comments comments (0)

Borrowing from my profile a bit....

"...I believe the key to any good story starts with cooperation, collaboration, and communication. If you (speaking generally) want your character to look good, then you have to make the other characters in play look good..."

 

Lets pause there a moment. 'If you want your character to look good, then you have to make the other characters look good." What does that mean? It's real simple, if you want your character to be awesome, then you have to make sure those you play with look just as awesome. This doesn't require long flowery posts, or exotic fonts, it's just keeping up communication with your fellow players. Making sure you're both on the same page about what's taking place and meeting each other half-way in regards to what you each one from the scene.

Does this always work out? Unfortunately not.

 

Here's an example:
Player A: "I put in a lot of time developing this character, not ready for them to die."

 

Player B: "Well my character doesn't show mercy, if he makes one exception where will it stop?"

 

Player A: "Well it was a pretty long fight, maybe my guy earned some grudging respect?"

 

Player B: "I don't think that would be true to who my character is, I'm sorry."

Stop!

 

In any difficult scene there has to be cooperation between the players, you both have to be willing to bend. There are hundreds of ways to resolve the above scenario, but Player B didn't want to compromise his character's status. That makes sure his character looks good, but Player A is left in the creek without a paddle. How many alternatives could you have offered? Player B has his character break the beaten character's legs and makes the fallen warrior a servant? Player A has his character plead for mercy and the victor realizes he could use another skilled fighter over a body to dispose of? These are just two, ther eare dozens!

 

All players involved have to be willing to bend and compromise to make sure everyone gets what they want. Cooperate with your fellow players, collaborate on what you all want out of a scene, and communcate to find the best resolution.

What's in a Villain

Posted on February 23, 2012 at 11:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Woot! Look at me! Got a blog spot! Well  these "Communications" are designed to help players with any confusion they may have from character creation to solving problems between others so that all involved get what they want out of a scene or play.


A Guide to Villainy

 "I'm not a great roleplayer. I'm only as great as the roles I've played with others." My Own Writing

 

 

Part 1

 

If you (generic) ask others how to play a villain, there can be several answers. Some would say don't bother, that it's a character role entirely too hard to fill. Others will say they're easy to play, but impossibly hard to get taken seriously. While an entirely third group might ask "Villain or Antagonist"? All three play a role in the character creation process to varying degrees.

 

As the player, it is up to you to decide the ilk of your prospective Villain. I prefer to use the term Villain because a character does not have to be evil to be an Antagonist. A misguided Hero can be just as dangerous as any world threatening villain. Acts for the "Greater Good" can be truly heinous.

 

Don't worry about a name to start. A character's name is not always a reflection of their nature. Focus on where it is you want them to go. Are they a great manipulator, working behind the scenes and sewing dischord and subterfuge? Does he/she/it even realize what it is they're doing? The type chosen helps to answer questions like this.

 

Type

 

There is the Mastermind, the villain that treats everything like pieces on a chess/game board and maneuvers others for their own gain no matter who is hurt. Example: James Moriarty. This is the sort of villain that could rule the world from a wheelchair.

 

The Repressed Nature is just as old as the Mastermind. The character isn't necessarily evil, but something occurs and brings it out; usually a traumatic experience. Example: Mr Hyde, The Green Goblin, Harley Quinn.

 

The Quiet One. This is the kind of villain that can lead an unassuming life, raise children, hold a dead-end job, even vote regularly and hold not a single criminal charge. Yet they have...compulsions, to commit heinous acts that have been with them since near birth. Example: Jeffrey Dahmer, Ted Bundy.

 

The Juggernaut is the sort many like/want to play simply because it's nice to say your character is an unstoppable force of nature. However, any character can wear this mantle, both Hero, Villain, or Anti-Hero. Comes down to what makes them an unstoppable force because unstoppable does not mean without weakness. Example: Jason Vorhees, Michael Meyers, The Hulk, Apocalypse, Doomsday.

 

There are other types, but these four are good starting points to work with.

 

Part 2

 

Now that you have an idea for the type of Villain you want to show off, its time to consider how they got that way. There isn't any textbook or singular approach for this part. It is entirely up to you as the narrator of their story. However...there are options. Bet you didn't see that coming, did you?

 

This is where you develope their history. Villains are made more often than born. The Monster wasn't really evil, though it did commit evil acts to preserve its own life, it was Victor Frankenstein's obsession. There's no right or wrong options at this point, just keep in mind what their Achiles Heel might be.

 

What makes your character a Mastermind? Did they spend 15 years in a prison sharing a cell with a con-man and a chess-Master? Did they grow up in the shadow of a relative or sibling who was a great military strategist? Are they simply obsessed with Tsun-Su and the Art of War? Or have they lived a life of Aristocracy learned manipulation from court intrigue. The Mastermind type takes years to become what they are, and tend to have deep histories. Example: Edmon Dontess, JigSaw.

 

What was the catalyst to send your character's Repressed Nature over the edge? Were they one of the heroes catching the badguys and it led to the brutal death of their family? Did they come home and find their girlfriend stuffed into a freezer? Did a Mastermind come along and show them a whole new world? What series of events finally made them snap?

 

The Quiet One offers a little more leway than the others simply because this character can literally be anyone. A mail-man, a door-to-door salesman, a freight driver/pilot, even the middle-school caffeteria lady. Just a matter of figuring out what their compulsion is. Do they have some bizarre fetish and it escalates to a serial nature? Maybe they collect dolls and that hobby isn't enough, they suddenly desire real dolls

 

Lastly...the Juggernaut. As asked above, what makes this character the beast they are? Genetic Mutation? An experiment by the Mastermind gone wrong? Are they a Repressed Nature that refuses to die after being stopped in life? Or was it merely an unfortunate series of events beyond their control?

 

The type chosen helps to build upon the history you want them to have and is the most crucial part.

 

Part 3

 

Type Chosen? Check.

 

History Concept? Check.

 

With those two out of the way we’re on to the fun part of the character creation process. The next step involves the character’s skill sets, abilities, and….

 

Style

 

As you may have noticed each section refers to the previous ones. This is just my way of showing how they constantly relate and inter-play within the character design. Type and History influence the character style. A highly militaristic background, lets say, twenty years, means they will dress conservatively. Their hair will be worn close-cropped, well trimmed, and will fall in-stride to a cadence without realizing it if they hear the sound-off even as background static. These are habits that would have been ingrained to them over many years.

 

The character’s style determines their thought process, playability, reactionary habits, and offers additional insight to how they view the world at large. A character’s “style” isn’t just how they dress or what Modus Operandi they follow, but also a further reflection of their personality. Are they outlandishly flamboyant? Does she dress like a stripper? Is their idea of “self” conservative, but their plans/murders highly complex? Do they suffer from Gender Confusion? Each of these relates to their personal style and outward attitude. Joker wore a purple suit and lived up to his name while being a Mastermind. There is also Bane, just as intelligent as Joker if not more, but because of the Venom he is classified as a Juggernaut. Can use Norman Bates, who is a character between Quiet One and Repressed Nature.

 

Strip away the type, and all but key elements to their history, you’re left with who the character is on the individual level. The type of person they are at the core. While Merits and Flaws also attribute to their style and give other players something for their characters to use as a foil, there isn’t a need to go insane with them. Make sure it’s a character you’re going to be able to play…consistently. Be honest, a character that is constantly introspective and mopes is going to be depressing for you…and the players/characters he or she interacts with. Conversely there is such a thing as a character that is too extroverted, and you’ll read about other characters looking for the “Off" button.

 

The two listed previously are not negative aspects to a character. Some players enjoy that sort, and that’s fine. Just make sure it’s something you, as the player, will not grow tired of playing. There are character types that are what I call ‘High Energy”. This means it takes a lot of your own physical energy to play them, and at the end of a night or play-session, you feel literally drained from keeping up with your own character.

 

Skills

The skills your character has are directly related to their history. If they were never in the military, how do they know what an AR-15 is? Where did they learn to fight? These questions determine multiple aspects. Say you want your villain to be a master at Hand-to-Hand combat. Well that can take at least a decade to achieve depending on method. If they were in the military, realistically this could only take 7 years. Basic training, specialization choice, specialize training per choice, etc.

A Quiet One working and attending a college? It takes four years to achieve the rank of black belt, dependant on martial style. Then another year or two to make the next black belt degree as it is all similar to going to college. First Black belt rank is your Bachelor’s degree. Second degree is your Masters and third, fourth, then fifth are your PhD levels.

 

Continuing with the martial aspects of the skill set, this doesn’t mean they are actually going to be an able fighter. There are second and third degree blackbelts that could not fight their way out of a bar brawl simply because their years of study might not have covered that scenario. Sparring is one-on-one, tournaments are one-on-one. A fight in a bar is drastically different. It is the individual against all of their opponent’s friends. They are not fair, they are not honest, and they always end up on the ground just like 90% of any other physical conflict. If where your character studied/learned, did not cover multiple assailants, they won’t be able to handle multiple assailants at once because its only in the movies that the opponents come one at a time. Your character would scramble to isolate the horde into one-on-one confrontations. These are just my thoughts on them derived from my own years in studying Shoto-Khan.

 

When choosing the skills of your character it is often in the best interest of the player to research them. The more you understand the skills and abilities of your character the more effectively you can describe what they do, how they do it, and the multiple effects it can have within the scene. The other side of researching the special skills of your character helps with Out of Character cooperation. Say your character is a Mage and he’s been casting spells for 50 years, he, she, or it is going to have an extensive repertoire of spells. Compile an exact list that would be within their spell book or grimoir with the specifics of what each does. Not only does this give your magic user actual limitations in their spell capability but also helps coordinate with other players the course of a scene. A character that hasn’t had formal study may not have the same level of control as one who entered an apprentice ship. The visual and somatic components of spells, if the character requires those, also add to the difficulty level in playability. A few D&D books do wonders for playing a mage in an online setting. If you want to go the distance, pick up a Spell Compedium, Player's Handbook, and other such texts. They're great source material.

 

As a player, the research and compilation aren’t necessary, but they can be nice little touches to help you flesh out what your character can and cannot do. If they’ve never been in a fist fight and aren’t a “fighter” type, the first time they punch someone, there is the high likelihood they’ll break their hand.

 

Abilities

Abilities are the capabilities of your character that don’t always require extensive training. These can be innate, even supernatural. Are they able to walk or phase through solid matter? How long can they keep the power active? Is it their whole body or just one limb at a time? Maybe they have multiple unique abilities or none at all. Like their whitey-tight wearing counterparts, a good villain (pun intended) can play to their strengths and fortify their weaknesses. Just keep some level of exploitability in place.

Well that's it for me! Hopefully this provides some food for thought and helps with the arduous task of character creation!

Sincerely,

Cain/Race


The RolePlayer's Pledge

Posted on February 20, 2012 at 2:40 AM Comments comments (9)

The Roleplayer's Pledge

 

1. First and foremost, I will remember that I am a member of a community and that my play is dependent on the direct and indirect participation of others. Without each other, we have nothing.

 

2. I will treat other players, characters, SLs with respect, even if I am choosing not to play with them.

 

3. I will keep my OOC criticism of other players, characters, and SLs constructive in nature. When I read constructive criticism about my own characters and SLs, I will try to be open minded, and I will not be defensive. I don't have to agree, just as no one has to agree with my opinions about their characters and SLs.

 

4. I will not be snarky or rude, even when my comments are meant to be general. Snarkiness, even for the sake of humor, can be hurtful, and that is poison to our community.

 

5. When I have a problem with another player, character, or SL, I will address it directly with the player in question, and I will approach that person in a respectful manner, always giving them the benefit of the doubt first.

 

6. When I vent, even in private arenas, about play issues that I do not feel are worthy of addressing directly with the player, character, or SL in question, I will keep in mind that I am speaking of another player, a real live person, who deserves my respect, no matter what.

 

7. I will recognize when someone is venting to me in private and will not repeat something that might be hurtful to others. In addition, I will speak up when I feel someone is venting in a cruel or disrespectful manner.

 

8. I will recognize that my play, characters, SLs, are not going to appeal to everyone, and I will try to perceive the difference between being ignored and being respectfully played around.

 

9. I will be supportive of the IC, community-building efforts of others. If for some reason I don't like those efforts, I will address that with the players directly, or in a public venue keeping a constructive and respectful tone, or I will politely avoid them.

 

10. I will be a positive, constructive, communicative, supportive, and encouraging member of this community. Negativity of any kind can be damaging to the group and eventually damages my own play and enjoyment. I will try to focus on the positive.


Graciously provided by Cain Romulus

 

The Illusion

Posted on February 17, 2012 at 5:45 AM Comments comments (2)

The Illusion

For several years it has come to my attention that there are roleplayers who have trouble creating back stories of their characters.

I, myself, was one of those characters. However I have learned over the years to think of what I want my character to do. In regards to it's race if my character can do it.

Some player's can easily create background or character information at a whim. But for those of you, like me, who need help with it there is hope.

The MacIntyre Project is here to assist you with any kind of character issue. The tools to create a well made character and play them within the confines of our glorious story line are right here.

You need only but to simply look or speak and it shall be given. For the time being the thought of your inability to create a proper background or character is entirely my friend, a fragment of your imagination.

:3 Just a friendly warning

Posted on February 16, 2012 at 6:10 PM Comments comments (0)

:3 this just to let folks know that im occassionally asked to edit things like plays!

I tend to make as very little changes as possible to the original post in order to keep the plays consistent. Small things like proper capitalization, comma and semi colon usage, typos, run on sentences. This is in no way a reflection of your rping skills. I don't want anyone to be offended at any of the changes i've made. So..this just to let ya know.

 

^_^ if you dont like a change..please feel free to say so. You can always change it back yourself. It is encouraged that you edit your own posts if you feel something doesn't fit quiet the way you wish

New Character IC Info Template

Posted on February 11, 2012 at 4:15 PM Comments comments (1)

Hey everyone.  Seen this format used on Wyatt's website project and asked if we could use it here. Obviously he agreed so hopefully for those of you like myself who have a hard time coming up with character information this will help. Or even if you just want to add some more depth feel free. Have fun and hope you all enjoy this.



 

Full name:

 

Nickname(s) or Alias:

 

Species:

 

Birthday:

 

Sexuality: 

 

Nationality:

 

Religion:

 

Currently lives:

 

Languages spoken:

 

Native language:

 

Relationship Status:

 

Height:

 

Weight:

 

Figure/build:

 

Hair colour:

 

Hairstyle:

 

Eye colour:

 

Skin/fur/etc colour:

 

Tattoos:

 

Piercings:

 

Scars/distinguishing marks:

 

Personality:

 

Likes:

 

Dislikes:

 

Fears/phobias:

 

Talents/skills:

 

Peaceful or aggressive attitude?

 

Fighting skills/techniques:

 

Special skills/magical powers/etc:

 

Weapon of choice (if any):

 

Weaknesses in combat:

 

Strengths in combat:

 

Parents names:

 

Siblings:

 

Children:

 

Best Friend:

 

Other Important Friends:

 

Acquaintances:

 

Backstory:

 

 

 

 


Bored?

Posted on February 10, 2012 at 2:05 PM Comments comments (0)

There are several ways to role play within the story line.

  • Forum Play: Just go to The Plays (Forum). RolePlaying area. Place a topic and an introductory post. Check back for a reply.
  • One On One play in Yahoo Instant Messenger. Just ask a member that is online if they want to play. Archive the play, edit it. Give it a title and post it under the Chronicles and Records of BlackRose Manor.
  • Join in on the group plays. These can be fun and a great way to get to know the other characters.
  • Also check out the Lore and Legends and Training Arena, these will be elaborated on more later.

I'm off to work, enjoy the play.
Raven BlackRose

Suggestions For New Members

Posted on February 10, 2012 at 12:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Here are some suggestions. There there to take or leave, that's why there called suggestions.

Setting up your profile:

  1. Choose a picture that fits your character and the era. I would prefer if you stay away from photograph type images and concentrate more on painted character images. If you can't find an image then ask I have a large archive and i'm sure some of the other players do as well.
  2. Personal info about yourself is optional. I prefer to remain IC (In Character) others don't, that choice is yours.
  3. Give some sort of profile on your character, description, background. This can be short or detailed and can be changed at any time. Pictures can even be added to the info page if you have more then one that you'd like to use. My character is a perfect example of this.
  4. Group Contacts: I have all the members grouped in my messenger list under BlackRose Manor. This way I know when a contact is on. It also makes it easier when i want to send out a message to everyone or invite everyone to a conference.
  5. Go into the profiles and add each contact to that group, their id's are at the bottom of their profile on the info tab of each character.
  6. If you would like to see that characters name in your yahoo list. Right click on the character, go to contact details and change their first and last name (if given) to their characters name. Makes it much easier in the plays if you see the characters name, rather then the users id or a different name as they have stated. Also makes editing easier if your the one doing the editing.
  7. If you can, try to use a text editor to prepare your post, cuts down on spelling errors and capitalization. Just a few of the issues I have come across in editing.

Remember these are just suggestions. More to come as I think of them. I am just starting to set up this blog so subscribe to it or check back often. Hopefully you will find some useful tips and info here.

Thank You
Raven BlackRose


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